Food and travel captivate Janet Podolak, who chronicles both for The News-Herald. Get the back story of her three decades of stories here. Guest bloggers and fellow News-Herald staffers also periodically share details of their trips.
Friday, November 21, 2014
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
Car sharing - idea whose time has come
Car sharing arrives there with the Nov. 12 debut of Zipcar — a 24/7 transportation option for students and the local community. Two vehicles will be at University Circle Inc., 10831 Magnolia Drive, and two will be parked at the Ford Road Garage, 1980 Ford Road. Rates, which start at $7.50 an hour and $69 a day, include gas, insurance and 180 miles a day.
Sounds great for dropping the gang off for an exhibit or show, zipping downtown for an errand, then whipping back to pick them all up at the appointed time
Memberships, available to university students and local businesses and nonprofits, permit reserving online or with a Smartphone. Details: www.zipcar.com/cleveland.
Sunday, November 9, 2014
Headed to Portugal and Spain
Insight is a top notch tour operator with expert guides, lots of seat and leg room, and itineraries with special experiences such as winery visits with tastings, a lake cruise, and seeing how free range pigs feast on acorns to become the cherished Iberico hams. We'll spend two nights in a single hotel three times during our trip and all are centrally located and within easy walking distance of many attractions for our free time.
Our expert guide has already introduced himself by mail and I've received a duplicate list of hotels with addresses and phone numbers so I can leave a copy behind. That's not always the case on organized tours but it's that kind of attention to detail I've experienced so far with Insight. Check our the website at www.insightvacations.com.
I'm doing my homework on the places we'll visit so I don't have to waste time asking a lot of questions I can have answers for before I leave. That will leave me time to meet the people, absorb my surroundings, shoot good photos and capture the videos I'll share with readers early in 2015.
I also have fairly liberal amounts of free time, so am seeking input from others who have been to Lisbon, Evora, Monsaraz, Lake Alquva and the Andulsian region. Tell me, please, what to eat, what to drink. what to buy, who to find, and where to take it all in.
Saturday, November 8, 2014
Long haul flying strategies
My next long trip will also be five hours' time difference, but I'm headed for Lisbon so it will be that much later than at home. When I arrive it will be morning but my internal time will be the middle of the night.
Here are some of the specifics Ive discovered through the years or being on the road for The News-Herald's Travel section.
My North Face backpack is critical because it becomes a footrest once I recline my seat for sleep. Neoprene Nufoot slippers go over my socks to keep me warm, provide traction and help me make the trek to the washroom. I brush my teeth using one-time use disposable brush picks with toothpaste embedded. A collapsible plastic water bottle the folds flat when empty is attached to the pack by a carbiner along with Purell handcleaner. Both are easy to clip off the pack and onto my belt when I explore my destination.
The water bottle, purchased at the AAA office in Mentor, was the envy of everyone in during my visit last spring to Cuba where hydration is important but bottled water is not widely found.
My sleep mask and foam earplugs are travel essentials since I need darkness and silence to sleep on flights and at my destinations. They're rolled and packed in a ziplock bag along with meds I need to take on the flight. I usually travel with a sleep aide, although I don't always use it. Prescription Ambien is my choice.